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Old 09-09-2005, 03:50 PM   #1
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Decorating yellow lab tank.

I am probaly one of the worst fish tank decorators there are. I however, recently started a 30 gallon cichlid tank with two yellow lab fry. I have a white/beige substrate and don't intend on changing it. I don't know what to do to it to make it looks as amazing as the ones on this forum. I am going to go to the store next week and buy some rocks, I don't think cichlids and plants would be a good idea. I have no idea what to do, if possible do you guys have any suggestions. Thank you in advance for your advice!

Thanks.
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Old 09-09-2005, 04:13 PM   #2
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yellow labs. are muba (muba=rock dwellers) they are also algae grazers so algae covered large rock formations would be closest to there natural enviroment, if thats what your shooting for.. HTH
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Old 09-09-2005, 04:14 PM   #3
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Generally, you're right about the plants and cichlids. As for the rocks and what not, you may have some good luck browsing the user gallery and taking a look at user aquariums. It may help you get the wheels turning. Also, when you buy your stuff, you could try to just drop it in various places and let it fall to its final resting place on its own. This may make a more natural look than a human-placed look.
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Old 09-09-2005, 04:18 PM   #4
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Alot of cichlid tank setups start with the plastic egg crate material for lighting underneath everything(on the glass) to help prevent falling rocks from cracking the bottom glass. HTH
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Old 09-09-2005, 06:05 PM   #5
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You can also silicone your rocks together when you set up a formation that you like. This will keep your fish from toppling the rocks and hurting themselves or cracking your tank, as mbuna are notorious diggers. Ebay usually has a good selection of Texas holey rock, which IMO looks great in cichlid tanks. Keep in mind that THR is limestone, which will raise your pH, but depending on your pH now that may be good for African cichlids. The shipping cost is prohibitive, though, at least for me.
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Old 09-09-2005, 06:27 PM   #6
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I think the PH would be fine.. limestone will only disolve in lower PH's it should quit around PH 8.. and yellow labs like about a 8.3 PH.. good to recognize if it were for fish that dont appreciate a high PH though :P
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Old 09-09-2005, 08:24 PM   #7
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Thanks for your advice. I think I am either going to make a giant pile of rock in the centre of the tank, that will take up a lot of space or buy the premade caves that are rocks with a giant hole in the middle.
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Old 09-09-2005, 08:27 PM   #8
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You'll probably be happier with it if you make your own. I haven't been that impressed with the premade ones since I started stacking my own rocks.
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Old 09-09-2005, 08:36 PM   #9
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just a few more additions to the excellent advice given before -
don't build the rock formations directly on the substrate. as gm mentioned before, put eggcrate (or tiles from HD or lowe's ) on the bottom of the glass, then stack the rocks, then lay the substrate.
don't silicone the whole rock structure together. depending on the type of rocks, its going to be very heavy or unmanageable in case you want to take it out of the tank someday. silicone it into modules after you finalize the structure.

also, don't despair. you can't go wrong with sand and rocks .
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